No time to track down full reviews of YA books? Seashell Reviews offers bite-size thoughts to let you know which books you shouldn’t pass up, and which ones you can hold off for another day. Original titled blog feature by Angel @ Mermaid Vision Books.
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Readers looking for the dark undertones of Melissa Walker’s previous novel, Small Town Sinners, may not find her latest book as engrossing, but her gift for contemporary voices is still very much present in Unbreak My Heart. The plot is rather humdrum and predictable, but the narration is stellar. Clementine’s own introspective nature helps to give the story a hopeful spirit, and it is her characterization that makes the requisite summer romance sparkle.
Quirky characters are part and parcel of great YA fiction, but This One Time With Julia may have taken things a bit too far. Despite my willingness to follow what promised to be a difficult character, I found it challenging to even understand what was happening in the novel. At times, it felt as though David Lampson was attempting to channel Daniel Keyes’ groundbreaking Flowers for Algernon, but there was no heart or rationality to the story.
Ignore the controversy. The Selection is a disappointing novel without the added weight of the blogger/author drama. Lackluster characters, a plot that doesn’t manage to justify itself in the course of the novel and a love triangle that reminded me why I stopped reading books with that kind of romance–Kiera Cass’s work is a bubbly, frothy piece of cotton candy, all sweetness but no substance.